Gumersalls Solicitors Epsom News

Purchasing a property can be a thrilling, exciting time, but it can also be extremely overwhelming period, particularly when you’re faced with so many questions to ask and answer.

From arranging a mortgage to navigating the conveyancing process, it’s important to have a better handle on all the steps involved in the purchase. We have gathered five of the best questions to ask when buying a property.


Do I need a survey?

A survey is to inspect and look at the physical condition of the property you want to buy. Its will highlight any physical defects and maintenance requirements. There are several types of survey, and a surveyor will be able to advise on which is best.

If you are buying the property with a mortgage, then your mortgage provider will typically instruct a valuation survey for their own protection. It is recommended for buyers to get a survey as an expert will be able to comment on the physical condition of the property, which is something that conveyancers cannot do.


Do covenants matter?

Covenants set out what you cannot do (restrictive) or what you must do (positive) with your property. It is important that you abide by these and that you understand the covenants affecting the property.

For example, there may be a covenant that prohibits any extension being built at the property which may be contrary to your intention. Building the extension could be deemed a breach of covenant, and you may find yourself in a litigious battle.

There is a possibility that a covenant may no longer be enforceable but this is a complex area that is not routinely investigated during the conveyancing process.


Where is my boundary?

The Land Registry does not describe exact boundary lines, nor are the plans provided by them intended to be definitive or legally binding. It is advised for buyers to check the Land Registry plan does reflect the position on the ground though – is there a corner of the garden not included?


When should I start my buildings insurance?

At the point at which the contracts are exchanged, the risk typically passes on to the buyer. If the property is damaged or destroyed in between the exchange and completion, then the buildings insurance would pay for the property to be rebuilt, but the buyer would be legally obliged to complete the purchase so not to be in breach of contract.


When do I need to pay my conveyancer?

Your conveyancer will need some money on account for searches and disbursements, which typically comes to around a few hundred pounds. The deposit is payable just prior to exchange of contracts.

Finally, your conveyancer should prepare a completion statement prior to completion which will include all receipts and payments, such as, SDLT, Land Registry fees and your legal fees. You will then need to ensure that the balance is with your conveyancer, in cleared funds, before completion can take place.

If you need conveyancing solicitors in Surrey, get in touch!